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Banking the Poor Through Everyday Stores

This paper by Ignacio Mas reviews the opportunities and strategic choices facing banks considering branchless banking options. Technology, and in particular the spread of real-time mobile communications networks, permits financial service providers to delegate ‘last mile’ cash management and customer servicing functions to third-party retail outlets. By making basic deposit, withdrawal, and payment functions available securely through retail shops that exist in every village and neighborhood, there is an opportunity to dramatically increase the physical footprint of financial service providers in developing countries and to transform the basic economics of low-balance savings.

Ignacio Mas
Ignacio Mas is a Senior Fellow at CEME at the Fletcher School. He has been deputy director at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, has held senior telecoms jobs at Vodafone and Intel, and has been adjunct professor at the Business School at the University of Chicago. He holds a SB degree from MIT and a PhD from Harvard.

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